Web Hosting – Definitely Not “One Size Fits All”

"Canadian Web Hosting Provider"Putting together a website involves making a whole lot of decisions. There’s design, functionality, content and more that needs to be chosen, and oftentimes making the best decisions there involves consulting with someone who’s more knowledgeable than you are with Internet marketing.

One of the later decisions you’ll need to make – but one that is no less important – is what type of web hosting service will you need. That web hosting is a necessity for your website goes without saying (your site requires it to be accessible on the Web), but understand that most Canadian web hosting service providers will offer a number of different web hosting packages at different price points.

When choosing which one will be best for you, your 3 primary considerations will be:

  • Optimum performance
  • Security
  • Configuration options

All of them coming, however, after you answer some very basic questions – what type of website do you have, what type of purpose(s) will it be serving (and how), and what type of incoming visitor volume do you expect to see for it?

3 To Start With

Generally, web-hosting packages will include one of 3 different types of web hosting. These are:

  • Shared hosting
  • Platform / CMS (content management system) specific hosting
  • VPS (virtual private server) hosting

So what are they, and how do they differ?

Shared Hosting

Shared website hosting in Canada is ideal for small businesses, individual sites, sites that have low traffic volume, and sites that need to be launched as soon as possible. And a big part of why it’s ideal for many people is – quite simply – it’s the most affordable option and you can often secure shared Canadian web hosting for less than $25 a month.

Shared hosting works by the service provider having any number of large, expansive servers where data is stored. With a shared hosting package, you – and many others like you – get a portion of this expansive space. It’s not unlike renting a room in a hotel, you’ve got your own little spot – and so does the fellow next to you.

This option also has a genuine user-friendly appeal, as shared hosting users will typically have their own control panel dashboard where they themselves can make changes to their site and / or its functionality. You can set up email addresses, add users, view site statistics, install software like WordPress or Drupal, and more.

As far as drawbacks, the 2 primary ones would be loading delays for users if the website begins to experience spikes in visitors, and also limited control in regards to supported languages and restricted changes to server configurations. The second part of that can be problematic for custom-coded sites.

CMS-Specific Managed Hosting

CMS-specific web hosting in Canada is best suited for small business sites built with a supported CMS, the most common of these definitely being WordPress. If your site relies heavily on content – and regularly updated content – having a WordPress-based website is preferable, and you’ll get better performance for it by choosing web hosting that’s designed for it.

Your site will load more quickly, images and other media that is incorporated into your text will load and show more quickly for visitors, and overall they’ll have a better and more visually-engaging and / or user friendly experience while visiting your website.

In addition, this type of hosting makes your website easily scalable. This refers to being able to control how much you pay for your hosting service – you only pay for what you need and the service handles any spike in website traffic. Lastly, CMS web hosting is definitely the first choice for developer. This is because it usually features tools for moving their sites between different stages of release – from development, to staging, to production, and so on. The entire process is simplified

The primary downside of CMS-specific managed hosting is – as with shared hosting – you have limited control and may very well struggle to find or be able to use any tools that are not provided via your web host.

VPS Hosting

Private is the key word in Virtual Private Server, as in it’s yours and yours alone! Naturally this makes VPS hosting in Canada the most expensive option of the three here, but if you have a large website or one that offers a SAAS (software-as-a-service), downloadable applications, or is simply a high-volume site, then VPS hosting is very likely the way you’ll want to go.

Think of it as giving your website as much ‘breathing room’ as it needs to run at peak performance no matter what types of strenuous demands are being put on it. You can rest much easier knowing your website will be functioning just as intended, even when large numbers of visitors are on the site!

In addition, you’ve also got the highest level of control and access with VPS hosting, and that’s a real plus for complex websites that are always being re-evaluated for performance and other considerations. You will typically have command-line access to the server, which allows you to install any processes you may need, and this type of hosting also offers extensive scalability. The servers can usually be spun up and down as needed.

Keep in mind though that VPS hosting puts real demands on the Webmaster. Configuring and optimizing your servers – and being aware of when and how often that needs to be done – can be a very time-consuming and intimidating task for those who are not familiar with the ins and outs of website analytics. To put it generally, VPS web hosting packages are often very high-maintenance and as such they’re best value when in the hands of an experienced and technologically savvy Webmaster.

The Right Web Hosting Service, from the Right Web Hosting Provider

Be very inquiring when working with clients in determining their web hosting needs and referring them to a service provider. Start with their objectives, site design, and where they see themselves AND their online identity being in a few years time. After that, the questions will typically be very specific given the type of client and the nature of their business or venture.

There will always be a number of service providers who’ll meet their needs and offer competitive pricing on their web hosting packages, but – again – you want to look for one that has a track record for reliable web hosting to go along with those fair prices. 4goodhosting.com is one such Canadian web hosting provider who can offer right-fit hosting packages for nearly any business or individual and back them with some of the most failsafe web hosting to be found anywhere, from Victoria all the way to Halifax.

Get Social to Build Your Company’s Brand Online

Brand awareness through social media networking connectionsBeing a big part of our daily lives, social media networks can provide a great way to influence your own life and those of others. Did you know that more than 30 percent of world’s population are using sites like Facebook and Twitter all the time?

First of all, there are 2.3 billion active social media accounts in the world. This means that almost one in every three people you see walking down the street has a social media account. With so many people using these types of media, it’s natural that businesses viewing them as a marketing channel.

It’s not as easy as just getting people to ‘follow’ you, and it’s important to understand how to run it properly and “dig deeper”. Here are 21 tips on how to boost your social media engagement to firmly establish your brand’s identity online via social media.

  1. Build your own “Noah’s Ark”

In an ever-crowded sea of users and posted content, you should learn to analyze and observe the activity of your defined audience. You want to post daily, but posting incessantly is definitely something you DON’T want to do. It is important to find the right way to influence your target audience at a right time with the right “dosage.” Don’t flood your social profile with innumerable – rather just keep them updated with good judgement with when and how often you contact them. It’s true that more people trust a brand that is active on social media, but it’s possible to overdo it and that’s a no-no for any business – or individual for that matter.

So you’re left asking – That’s great, but when is the best time to post?

This depends on two major factors; first, your industry and the social media channel(s) you’ve chosen to be in touch with your customers and/or interest groups. Research has indicated that Facebook posts in general do better on Thursdays and Fridays, while Wednesdays at around 3pm are times for Twitter, depending on the time zone of your audience of course. These are based on averages across multiple industries. Tools like Fanpage Karma can be very helpful for determining the best time to post your own content. It may also help to take a look at analytical tools inside each social channel. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube all offer page analytics for users.

  1. Keep it short – Always

Some studies have shown that content presented in certain lengths in specific social channels perform better. According to one of the widely popular social marketing platforms Buffer, keying your posts to specifics can be very beneficial.

For instance, Tweets between 71 and 100 characters have a 17% higher engagement rate. Facebook posts with approximately 40 characters are 86% more likely to engage fans as opposed to longer pieces. The most popular YouTube videos are less than three minutes long.

Always be ready to improvise and test certain patterns, you can always discover a new way and it might just be that one thing that boosts your content’s appearance rates where you want it to be seen. Keep an eye on number of characters and description that you use in your post.

  1. Add Images

As kids, most of us look at the images before even laying an eye on a single character of any book. Image is important to us because there is an immediate visual stimulus from the eye to the brain. According to WebDAM, social posts that include imagery have a higher engagement rate by 650 % as compared to plain text. In fact, more than 90% of what we learn is through visualization. Adding a photo with a link could easily enhance your interaction with those who follow you on sites like Facebook and Twitter, and adding images is surprisingly easy.

  1. Emoticons Rock

Emojis are simple but powerful, and they’re a magical tool that can increase comments on a post by 33%! That may in part have to do with the visual aspect mentioned above, but they also add the human element to it – showing feelings and ‘emotions’ as their name suggest. They’re highly recommended for Facebook, Twitter and even SMS text marketing, and for ads they can and should even be included in the subject lines. All it takes is an extra set of characters when creating your post to increase interaction by up to a third and make your post much more interactive.

  1. Join Groups and Forums – and Participate

This is another simple yet powerful tool for most social media networks – be engaged yourself and you’ll promote further engagement and garner followers. It is a widespread method of sharing your info and thoughts on the Internet. Facebook experienced more than 25 billion “likes” within posts on the group platform in 2015, so don’t be afraid to spread the ‘likes’ around and comment on content that you find interesting, appealing, or both.

Virtually anyone can start a group. Maintaining it and keeping it “clean” with regular feedback, it takes a bit more effort. Keeping your organization active on the group page will boost your connection with others, it always does

  1. Get your #hashtags out

Most of us want to have an impact across the world. We want everyone to hear our message. By using a hashtag with any primary term for your product or content, you can include comments within virtually any conversation. With Twitter being so powerful (more than 313 million active users each month), there’s a lot to gain from putting your hashtags out there. For example, using “#Love” puts your message in front of everyone currently reading about “love.” The right comment – either positive or negative – has the potential to engage thousands of readers almost immediately.

  1. Call to Action

Never underestimate the true power of a good call to action. According to Adroll.com, these simple but yet powerful snippets can make people up to 3x more likely to click ‘through’ your content if you, quite simply, ‘tell’ them to do it.

A call to action is when you suggest to your readers to click to a link, make a phone call or interact with the company in some way using certain phrases like “Click to get 10% discount”, “Call us and get a free 10-day trial” etc. If there’s perceived value there, and they’re part of your audience, they’ll be enticed.

As you may know, most YouTube stars always suggest that their viewers “click the subscribe button” after the video. Another common practice for many businesses is to include the phrase, “Follow us on Facebook”. These and other phrases encourage people to interact, and it puts them in your sphere of influence for further communications and marketing efforts

  1. Awesome Blog Content

No one wakes up in the morning thinking today’s going to be the day for a bad piece of content. However, not everyone takes the time to make it picturesque either. Use content marketing tools and analytics to create something “worth waiting for”.

The more value someone finds within your content, the more likely he or she will be to share it. Try writing something unique and special. Keep in mind that if you write on something that you are interested in, the more likely others of the same interest will read it and share it.

Another good tip is to use sharing tools such as SproutSocial or Buffer. Tools such as these can help you share content across a wide scope of social media while saving you a lot of time.

  1. Share Your Videos

Now that you know how powerful images and Emoji’s are, imagine tons of images presented in a matter of second. That’s what Video can do for you!

Video content generates approximately 1200% more shares than using text and images combined. This includes everything from in-depth video programming video tutorials to a six-second Vine clip.

If you can make someone laugh, all the better. People want to be entertained as well as be educated. Making a comical “How Not To” video maybe your way of going viral.

  1. Get Some Surveys Running

Creating a Survey for your guests to use can help engage your audience while helping you learn more about their behaviors and preferences. You’d be amazed by how much data you could gather from those who follow your brand online.

A survey can also please your page visitors. It makes them feel like their opinion is important to your business. Put some effort into creating a series of meaningful inquiries that you can use to understand your audience better.

  1. Make some Winners!

It is always nice to get that surprise package from a unexpected friend. Being friendly and open with your customers is one of the key parts of social media marketing. Creating a contest is a nice way of letting your customers and audience know they’re important and that checking you out regularly has its benefits!

If you surprise them, there is a high chance they will stay tuned into your social media channel to see what’s coming next. Sometimes a freebie is can be worth its weight in digital gold when it comes to marketing.

  1. Making it Interactive

How many times have you taken a quiz to, for example, “find out who you were in your previous life”? Although this may sound funny, this is just an example of interactive content. This puts the user right in the center of attention and allows him or her to take over control.

This adds a great line between you and your audience. It offers them something else to do while keeping them interested.

By the way, I was a Bruce Lee in a previous life!

  1. Making Evergreen Content

Making, writing or creating takes inspiration, imagination and discipline. Making something that will stay true, interesting and unique doesn’t necessarily mean it will, but the key is in the writers hands, giving him or her a chance to open the doors of “time” without ever locking them. One of the reasons why Evergreen blogs are so important is because they can continue to generate visitors for an extremely long period of time.

It’s not unusual for a company to share an evergreen post on Twitter or Facebook from several years ago. It gives you a power to generate new users by re-introducing your previous valuable posts at certain times when you know they’ll be well received

  1. Integrate Your Social Media

One of the most important parts of social media is how well is it all integrated with each other. For example, you can create a YouTube video and share it on Facebook with a click of the mouse.

By the end of 2015, as many as 65% of adults in US were using some kind of social networking site. This even includes those who don’t have Internet in their homes in some cases.

By connecting your social media accounts, you have the potential to broaden your reach while engaging a portion of those individuals.

  1. Sharing Quotes

Quotes present a century old voice for our species and it’s easily accessible and broadly used on the Internet. Quotes play an important role since many people see visuals with inspirational messages that causes them to act, share, like or comment.

Sometimes quotes can be more effective than anything else you had in mind. If everything fails to surprise, quotes may well do!

  1. Host an Online Event

Events are great way to attract a group of people of same interests to interact with your brand. Webinars, Facebook Live’s and even Google Hangouts can all be used for your company’s purposes. Make experience for your users fun and educational. Most of us live for these types of experiences!

Once the event is over, don’t forget to share it on social media.

Blogging For Beginners Made Easy: How to Get your Blog Up and Running Fast with Unique, Quality Content

Businessman hand press web blog button icon
The word ‘blog’ is a term that’s a condensed version of ‘web log’, and these days they’re incredibly popular as a means for people to express themselves and share their interests, expertise, or perspective on what’s new in life or what’s happening in the world. You can start by understanding this – setting up a blog isn’t difficult at all, and if you’ve got quality content (writing) and some snappy images to go along with them then it’s equally easy to have people visit your blog regularly. Here’s a few tips and guidelines so that you can get off on the right foot and avoid making the kinds of mistakes that are common for newbie bloggers.

Construction Underway

Any spot that’s located on the World Wide Web will need its own domain and web hosting, so the first thing you’ll need to do for a blog is to register your domain and get yourself an affordable web hosting package. Once you’ve done that, you need to familiarize yourself with a piece of content management software. WordPress is one of the most popular for the fact that it’s really simple to use and most folks can get the hang of it in a day or two. Download it and start installing the plugins and themes you’ll be using.

Now to your content – What do you have to say, and why is it worthwhile sharing it with readers on the web? Maybe you’d like to promote a hobby of yours that you think would be super enjoyable for others to get into to. Maybe you’re a huge sports fan and you want to share your perspective on the big league and its players. Maybe you’ve got an idea that you think can become profitable if you build up the right readership and then attract advertisers.

The possibilities are endless.

Find a Niche

It’s highly unlikely you’re the first one that’s thought of publishing what it is you’ve got in mind. That doesn’t mean that you can’t be successful with it. Find your niche within that subject matter and you’ll be able to distinguish yourself, and doing so is definitely important.

So, some tips in this regard:

1. Establish your ‘voice’, and make your content stand out

Find a few blogs that are on the same subject, and have a look at the way the blogger writes and organizes the information and layout. Do you like it? Good, take notes of their approach and then think of ways you can incorporate that style into your blog. But once you start writing, try to bend it here and there and add different touches. And you’ll need to write often if you want to have a quality blog that keeps readers coming back, so you’ll have plenty of practice at this.

2. Take a different approach

This is simple enough to understand, so let’s use and example. Let’s say you want to blog on standup paddle boarding. They’ll likely be more than a few blogs on SUP out there that talk about techniques, gear etc etc. You should talk about those aspects too, but how about attaching a GoPro to the front of your paddle board and add a new segment each week about what it’s like to paddle board at “Echo Lake”, for example. It’ll engage readers more, and it’ll give you a reason to go paddle boarding somewhere new each week.

This is just an example, but surely you get the idea.

Back to the Infrastructure

Now that we’ve got you on the right path for writing your blog, we need to get back to the set-up of it. As mentioned, you’ll need a domain and web hosting. Think web hosting is expensive? Think again, it’s absolutely NOT expensive at all and you should be able to find personal web hosting in Canada for less than $30 for a whole year, and many providers offer free blog website domain registration as part of their package. Make sure you go with one that’s very reliable, has a guarantee on uptime at least 99+% of the time and – as mentioned – has fair prices. 4GoodHosting is one of Canada’s best web hosting providers, and you’ll be able to check off all these boxes with them.

Choose a domain that’s easy to remember, not too long, and is a good indicator of what your blog is all about. You can then register it for free with 4GoodHosting and enjoy the affordability and convenience of their personal Canadian web hosting service that’s currently just $2.95 a month! Talk about affordable, and from there you can focus on the enjoyable part of it all – writing your blog and publishing new content regularly!

Have fun with it, and we look forward to seeing what you’ve got to share with the world

DNS – “What Is It and How Does It Work?”


DNS is an acronym that stands for “domain name system”. Without domain names, we wouldn’t have a way of getting to particular a website, such as numbers like, or worse the new ipv6 numbers that are much longer, too long in fact to provide an example here.

In this article we will give an overview of how D.N.S functions. The most important thing, that our web hosting customers can learn from this, is the process of how DNS records are changed, or updated to your web host’s “name servers” address’. These are important domain names which also rely on the DNS system to be converted into your webserver’s numerical IP-address.

“Name Servers”

Name servers enable people to use their domain name in order to access your webserver; which then in turn directs your site visitors to your specific web hosting account and files, rather than a complex IP address. DNS also makes economical “shared hosting” possible, since the server’s IP address can be reused for dozens of different websites.

Your name servers are the most important detail of your domain record, again their purpose is to redirect a visitor’s web browser to the place, that is web-server on a rack in a data-room someplace, where your site is being hosted.

Modifying your domain name server(s) enables you to change your web host without having to transfer your domain to another registrar.

Name servers can also be referred to as DNS servers; which can create confusion due to the two synonymous terms.

DNS Records

DNS refers to the layer of the internet stack, very similar to a database application, that contains the domain names, name servers, IP address’ and personal or company registration information encapsulating every public site on the Internet.
DNS records contain various types of data, syntax, and commands for how a webserver should respond to lookup requests.

Some of the most common syntax items defined:

· “A”-record. The actual webserver IP address that is associated with the domain.

· “CNAME”-record. CNAME indicates sub-domains that can be associated with your domain.

· “MX”-record. This refers to specific mail servers that might be optionally used in accordance with your domain, such as using gmail with your domain for email.

· “NS”-record. The nameservers that are currently set for your domain.

· “SOA”-record. Information about your domain, like when your domain was last updated and relevant contact information.

· “TXT”-record. Text about any additional information about the domain.

As you can see, there are numerous components of your DNS records, but most of this information can’t and shouldn’t be altered. The main component of your DNS records that will be of concern to you, if you ever have to change, is your name servers.

Changing Name Servers

Registrars are responsible for allowing you to edit your DNS record name severs. The default usually automatically assigns same host and registrar upon registration. Domain transfers usually carry over using the same name server information as from the previous registrar.

However, if your domain is not registered and also hosted in the same place, then you’ll follow the general steps below to update the name servers.

4GoodHosting customers can follow these instructions to change their name servers:

1. Locate Domain Management

Every registrar has domain management tools which allow you to edit your name servers. This ability will usually be found on the domain management area your client account/portal.

2. Find Your Name Servers

Under each of your individual domain(s) you’ll be able to change your name servers. Your name servers will look something like this:
You will need to change both the “primary” and “secondary” name server. The second server exists in the rare even that the first one crashes, or some other condition that prevents it from being resourced.

3. Setting New Name Servers

Simply change your existing name servers to the new name servers and click “Update” or “Save”. These changes don’t take place immediately across the entire internet. Domain name server updates usually take anywhere from 4-24 hours to ‘propagate’ throughout the global DNS internet system.

With this information, you are able to understand some key functionality of how the internet logically works. If you have any remaining questions concerning your domains or domain records, please contact us at support @ 4goodhosting.com for a rapid response to your inquiries.

Please contact us at one of the very best Canadian Web Hosting Companies, 4GoodHosting.